I’ve finally gotten so sick how I’ve gotten out of shape that I’ve actually started busing back to Táibĕi. In Guīshān, there’s no gym or even anyplace to run where I don’t have to avoid dogs and dodge traffic. I have little choice. Fortunately, now that I’m officially a full-time teacher, I don’t have to stay at the office outside my class hours, as long as I get my work done. I have classes from 1:30 to 5:00 every afternoon, 7:30 to 9:30 on TuWF evenings, and from 1:00 to 6:00 on Saturdays. On the two days I only have 3 hours of class (Mondays and Thursdays), I have time to make it into the city to work out. Before I came to Taiwan, I could literally run twenty miles, and I had a good amount of muscle, too. Now I’m five pounds lighter with a waist that’s nearly ten inches bigger. Not good.

The only problem is, it’s an hour ride each way. Last night, I finished my last hour of classes at 5pm, and spent an hour or so making some tests, and tweaking the curriculum for my second grade class a bit. Then I got on the bus and went into the city, so I could work out at California Fitness. After an hour on the treadmill and some weight-lifting, I walked to the bus station to wait for my ride back. I didn’t get home until about 11:00.

I got back into the office by 11:30pm and started listening to my Tuesday/Friday students’ taped homework. Since they’re a new class, I have to listen to all the tapes. The good side is, I was able to do some grading at the same time. The bad side is, I didn’t make it out of the office until 3:30am and I had to be back in there for five hours of classes, plus an entrance exam, plus a make up test for one of my students, plus another hour and a half of grading books. I have a similar schedule tomorrow. I’m really, really not sure if I’ll have the energy to make it to the gym again on Friday.